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Friday, August 23, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Redevelopment underway for former Sears store at Coeur d’Alene mall

UPDATED: Tue., Aug. 13, 2019, 7:30 p.m.

Shoppers walk toward the Sears store in Silver Lake Mall in Coeur d’Alene on Thursday, March 29, 2018, shortly before its closure. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Shoppers walk toward the Sears store in Silver Lake Mall in Coeur d’Alene on Thursday, March 29, 2018, shortly before its closure. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

A former Sears store at the Silver Lake Mall in Coeur d’Alene is undergoing renovation to potentially house two new tenants, Planet Fitness and a Flying Squirrel Trampoline Park.

New Hampshire-based Planet Fitness filed permits with the city of Coeur d’Alene in July indicating more than $1 million in tenant improvements to the building at 200 W. Hanley Ave.

Planet Fitness declined to comment on the company’s expansion to Coeur d’Alene, which would mark its sixth location in Idaho. The company also has gyms in Spokane and Spokane Valley.

Planet Fitness was founded in 1992 and is one of the fastest-growing operators of fitness centers, with more than 1,859 gyms worldwide. More than 95% of the company’s gyms are independently owned and operated.

Coeur d’Alene-based Flying Squirrel Sports, the self-proclaimed creator of the “world’s largest indoor trampoline park,” is planning to share space with Planet Fitness in the former Sears store, the Coeur d’Alene Press reported last week.

Flying Squirrel operates 13 indoor trampoline parks in Montana, Florida, Canada and Spokane Valley, the latter opening last year. The 40,000-square-foot building at 15312 E. Sprague Ave. in Spokane Valley features a Topgolf Swing Suite, a cafe and 3-D rock climbing walls, in addition to the indoor trampoline park.

A spokeswoman with Flying Squirrel Sports said Tuesday she “couldn’t confirm or deny” the proposed location at Silver Lake Mall in Coeur d’Alene.

The Sears store at Silver Lake Mall was among 39 stores that Hoffman Estates, Illinois-based Sears Holding Corp. shuttered last year in an effort to return profitability to the company after it sought bankruptcy protection.

Edward Lampert, former Sears CEO and its largest shareholder, purchased controlling interest in Sears Holding Corp. in February through Transform Co., an affiliate of his hedge fund, ESL Investments.

Last week, Transform announced closure of the Sears store at NorthTown Mall by October, citing “a weak retail environment.”

As more big-box mall anchors like Sears close their doors, it leaves a vacant space that developers aim to fill with unique tenants, such as fitness centers.

The number of fitness centers in shopping centers has doubled over the past decade, from more than 6,200 in 2008 to more than 14,000 in 2018, according to CoStar, a commercial real estate information company.

Chicago-based Brookfield Properties, a global real estate services company that owns Silver Lake Mall, declined to comment on tenant agreements with Planet Fitness and Flying Squirrel Sports.

Brookfield’s parent, Brookfield Property Partners, stated in a 2018 annual report that “redevelopment of existing properties allows for the recapture of unproductive anchor boxes to re-tenant them with other retail uses, food and beverage, or entertainment tenants that we believe will drive foot traffic to our malls.”

Brookfield Properties operates more than 140 retail properties nationwide, including NorthTown Mall and the Spokane Valley Mall. The real estate company has 10 million square feet of active development projects underway, with another 11 million square feet in the planning stages, according to the annual report.

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